The UK government has launched a £400 million (€455m) infrastructure fund to further investment in ‘full-fibre’ broadband.
The aim is to offer speeds of up to one gigabit per second (Gbps) or more to households and businesses by having fibre optic cables run right up to their properties, rather than relying on copper cables to connect them to roadside cabinets.
The Digital Infrastructure Investment Fund’s goal is to offer ‘ultra-fast’ fibre-to-the-property broadband to two million premises by 2020, and the government is tapping private investors to match its investment. At present the figure is closer to one million premises.
The move coincides with the first meeting on July 3rd of the Digital Economy Council, chaired by Culture Secretary Karen Bradley, which brings together some of the most influential voices in the tech sector to stimulate new growth and deliver new jobs in the digital economy.
The Council has been set up to provide a forum for collaboration as Government works with leading industry figures on the implementation of the UK Digital Strategy and the development of a Digital Charter. Its members include TechUK, Google, Facebook, Cisco, Dotforge, Coadec, TV Squared, BT and Apple.
The Digital Strategy includes plans to boost the nation’s digital skills, infrastructure and innovation, and aims to make the UK the best place to invest in tech. It will help to deliver the Government’s ambition to make the UK the best place to start and run a digital business – creating more of the high-skilled, high-paid jobs of the future with the benefits felt in all four corners of the United Kingdom.